Friday, 24 February 2017

Out and about!

I have been told that Storm Doris blew across to Germany and became Storm Thomas. Is this the first example of a transgender storm? It seems that this has something to do with us alternating male and female names as individual storms come along while the Germans alternate male and female names according to years. So if there are two or more storms in one year they will all be male or female, depending on which year it is. What a load of nonsense? When did we start naming storms anyway? What's wrong with talking about, for example, the storm of February 23rd 2017?

I have a friend called Dorice, not Doris at all and yet her quite grown-up son took great delight in informing all his friends that his mother was not responsible for the havoc caused by the storm.

Among the other stuff that was blown around by the strong winds, trampolines in people's gardens took to the air. I saw some video clips of these quite large trampolines leaping around. In one case a man narrowly escaped being trapped underneath a flying trampoline. And I read that London Fire Brigade dealt with around 20 storm related incidents, presumably not all flying trampolines but including a trampoline that blew from a garden onto a roundabout in the south-east of the city. Surely these large trampolines should be tied down anyway to prevent problems when large numbers of children start bouncing on the.

London fire brigade gave this advice: “To help stay safe during windy weather people should always clear gardens, balconies and window sills of anything that could be blown away. They should also take extra care if they venture outside and be careful using candles in the case of a power cut.” So when the next storm comes along, whatever it is called, we can all be better prepared.

I was just glad that I was not travelling from London Euston to Manchester Piccadilly by train. Euston looked as though it was in a state of total chaos with all the stranded passengers. In fact, I just stayed at home, not venturing out into the weather at all.

Today has been a much better day, bright and crisp with plenty of sunshine. I accompanied my daughter and her brood to a zoo near Barrow-in-Furness. They had advertised free entry until the end of the month. Everyone and their grandmothers must have heard about it as we had to stand a long while in the queue to get in. Free entry and half term combined to fill the place up. But we had a pleasant drive, apart from a long queue to get past roadworks when we were less than five miles away from the place. And we saw some interesting animals and bird. All good!

Something else altogether: I have often been intrigued by pictures of drained swimming pools. They seem to represent total abandonment. It probably comes from watching the film "Empire of the Sun". So, to finish off, here is a link to a series of photos taken by someone who set out to make use of empty swimming pools as skateboard parks.

Skateboarding is a sport (is it a sport?) which I find hard to comprehend but I am prepared to ket everyone have their own enthusiasms.

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